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(Pittsburgh) -- The United Steelworkers (USW) released the following statement today after the U.S. International Trade Commission (ITC), by a vote of 3 to 2, denied relief from dumped and subsidized Chinese truck and bus tires to workers. While the Department of Commerce (DOC) in late January found that the subject tires were subsidized at margins ranging from 20.98 to 63.34 percent and that dumping had occurred at rates ranging from 9 to 22.57 percent, a majority of the voting commissioners failed to see the injury that had been inflicted.
“The ITC commissioners made a huge mistake,” said USW International President Leo W. Gerard. “While the Department of Commerce identified subsidies of up to more than 60 percent and dumping of up to almost 23 percent, the ITC failed to support relief for the injured workers. That simply ignores the facts and the harm that Chinese unfairly-traded exports have caused the workers.
“The size of the margins clearly indicated the serious nature of the problem, but our law separates the facts from the determination of whether injury has occurred. For too long, that has jeopardized the jobs of workers across the country that make high quality products. Our members can compete against companies, but not countries. That’s exactly what happens when it comes to competing against China.
“The injury that the workers making truck and bus tires have experienced is tragic. Massive subsidies and dumping must be challenged,” said Gerard.
“China continues to ramp up capacity throughout the tire sector, seeking to sell here at any price. It is time for the government to step in so that workers do not have to continue to shoulder the burden of failed trade agreements and policies,” said USW International Vice President Tom Conway. “Workers are demanding that our government stand up for their interests.”
“For many years we have fought Chinese companies targeting the U.S. market and American workers with unfair practices,” said USW International Secretary-Treasurer Stan Johnson. “Our members in the tire sector have stood their ground and fought like hell to stop China’s dumping and subsidies. Today, workers making truck and bus tires have been left holding the short end of the stick. We will look to the Congress and the new Administration to determine whether other steps can be taken to save these vital family-supportive jobs.”
“The fight for these jobs is far from over,” said Johnson.
The USW represents 850,000 workers in North America employed in many industries that include metals, rubber, chemicals, paper, oil refining and the service and public sectors.